Vdovina Galina

Arguments for the Existence of God in the Francisco Suarez’ "Metaphysical Disputations"

Vdovina Galina (2017) "Arguments for the Existence of God in the Francisco Suarez’ "Metaphysical Disputations" ", Vestnik Pravoslavnogo Sviato-Tikhonovskogo gumanitarnogo universiteta. Seriia I : Bogoslovie. Filosofiia. Religiovedenie, 2017, vol. 73, pp. 69-82 (in Russian).

DOI of the paper: 10.15382/sturI201773.69-82


The article considers arguments for the existence of God that are presented in Francisco Suarez’ treatise Metaphysical Disputations. The work of Suarez contains the most developed and detailed exposition of natural theology that exists in the scholastic tradition. Suarez explicitates the problem, formulating three questions: what is a being that we call God? Is it possible to prove or justify his existence? How is it possible? Suarez answers the first question by showing that we come to a concept of the prime and excellent being through a series of divisions in the concept of being. That prime being is infinite, absolute, necessary and uncreated. The second question is answered by the procedure of that division and its result. In his answer to the third question, Suarez distinguishes physical and metaphysical arguments. According to Suarez, the most significant physical proofs are the argument from motion and the argument from the rational soul. Nevertheless, he demonstrates that purely physical arguments cannot lead us to a being, which we call God. Only metaphysical argument from the principle, everything which is produced, is produces by something else, is really effective. The logic of the metaphysical proof is as follows: first, we have to demonstrate the necessary existence of the first non-produced thing: secondly, we are to show that such a thing can only be one. The first point is proved through the demonstration of an absolutely first cause in each series of causes, the second one is made evident through a demonstration of the impossibility to coexist simultaneously for two equally perfect first causes of equal causing power.


Suarez, Metaphusical Disputations, natural theology, scholasticism, arguments for the existence of God, physical arguments, metaphysical arguments, first being, first cause, perfection of first cause, the uniqueness of first cause


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Information about the author

Vdovina Galina

Academic Degree: Doctor of Sciences* in Philosophy;
Place of work: Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences; Goncharnaya Str. 12/1, Moscow 109240, Russian Federation;
Post: Leading Research Fellow;
ORCID: 0000-0003-3220-924X;
Email: galvd1@yandex.ru.

*According to ISCED 2011, a post-doctoral degree called Doctor of Sciences (D.Sc.) is given to reflect second advanced research qualifications or higher doctorates.


The article is written within the framework of the project № 15-03-00211 "Metaphysics in the intercultural space: history and modernity" supported by RFBR Foundation